CDC has begun conducting blood tests that can tell whether a person has developed specific antibodies that indicate they had been infected by the new coronavirus and recovered, in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from California, Georgia, and Texas.
- California: Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) on Monday announced that California will loan 500 of its ventilators to the Strategic National Stockpile, which is a federal stockpile of medical supplies intended to help the United States respond to emergencies. While California also has a high number of cases of Covid-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, the state hasn't yet experienced a surge comparable to New York—though Newsom said state officials are preparing for one (Myers, Los Angeles Times, 4/6).
- Georgia: CDC has begun conducting blood tests intended to garner a more accurate count of how many Americans have been infected with the new coronavirus. The tests will tell whether a person has developed specific antibodies that indicate they had been infected by the virus and recovered. CDC officials said the agency also plans to launch a national survey and a survey of health care workers to help the federal government get a more precise view of the new coronavirus' spread in the country (Branswell, STAT News, 4/4; van Wagtendonk, Vox, 4/5; Roubein, Politico, 4/4).
- Texas: The town of Laredo on Thursday passed an emergency mandate requiring all residents to cover their faces when out in public or else be subject to a $1,000 fine. Robert Eads, Laredo city manager, clarified that residents don't have to necessarily wear a mask in public, but rather cover their faces, and that bandannas and scarves would be considered acceptable coverings (Farzan, Washington Post, 4/3).